Dating in 2016 is nothing like it was ten years ago, or even five years ago. The progression of time, coupled with the advancement of technology, has drastically changed things in the dating world. Meeting & getting to know new people has become easier, while standards & expectations have become lower. Basically...you don't know what you're gonna get. So we've enlisted the help of Delicious Living Coach Adama Hamadi & compiled a list of dos & don'ts to help our Luxe Girls survive dating in this day & age. Guys, you're up next, but this one is for the ladies!
1. Set your standards & stick to them.
You've set standards for yourself for a reason, and the reason is because you know what you want & what you don't want. If he doesn't have at least 80% of what you're looking for in a mate...move along. If you keep meeting bozo after bozo, it may be time to review & revise those standards. Don't undervalue yourself!
2. Don't "chill," it's a SETUP!
Back in the day "chillin'" really meant chilling. You know...hanging out, talking, actually watching television, etc. Then one magical day, it suddenly transformed into some kind of secret code word for SEX. So listen to me. Say NO to Netflix & Chill (unless you're into that kind of thing). Say NO to "chillin" as a first encounter altogether... because chillin' = children.
3. Do Not Answer.
Upon first meeting someone, it's not a good idea to answer phone calls/text messages at booty-call hours. Unless you're DTF...then by all means booty-call down. If you're in this dating thing for more than just a good time, you have to show your prospective mate precisely that. Showing him that you're available during late night/early morning hours will give him the impression that you're a "Netflix & Chill" girl. Remember what I said about chillin'?
4. Don't fall for potential.
By all means, this does not mean that you shouldn't give a guy who's getting back on his feet a chance. It just means that actions speak louder than words. A lot of times we get swept up in the nice, fancy words people use, the "would be" and "could be," and the amazing person you see him becoming as time progresses. You think by sticking with this person, & nurturing their potential, eventually you'll get a return on everything you put into the relationship. That's not guaranteed. He can have the potential to be all the amazing things under the sun, but if he isn't taking the necessary steps to show you he means what he says, let his words fall on deaf ears. Some people just like to hear themselves talk; and by ignoring Mr. Potential's actions (or lack thereof), you'll be doing more damage than good. Remember, you are what you DO, not what you say you'll do.
5. Do your research!!
I don't care what anyone says...if I'm dating you, I have stalked your social media. I know your Mom, Great Auntie Joy, Grandma Edna, Cousin Tee-Tee, Baby Mama, Family dog...EVERYBODY! And I admit this with absolutely NO shame. How many times have you heard of, seen, or even been the girl who meets this great guy...starts dating him, and then one day you run into his Facebook profile, where he's been in a happy relationship with his child's mother since 2013.. and you didn't even know he had a kid?? Girl, bye!
Granted, social media doesn't always tell the whole story, it tells SOME of it. Do a little digging so you have an idea of what you're getting yourself into. Which brings me to my next point...
6. Remember...the persona he displays on social media is NOT to be confused with the person he is offline.
We all know social & dating sites are two of the top ways to meet people at the time. We also know there are people out there who like to exaggerate truth via social media. With that said, don't take every little thing you see online for face value, or you'll be sorely disappointed. His Facebook had you thinking he drives a red G-Wagon...then he shows up in an Xfinity van (he said the G-Wagon is at the shop, right?). *blank stare*
7. Don't blame yourself if someone ghosts on you.
Urban Dictionary defines "Ghosting" as "The act of suddenly ceasing all communication with someone the subject is dating, but no longer wishes to date. This is done in hopes that the ghostee will just "get the hint" and leave the subject alone, as opposed to the subject simply telling them he/she is no longer interested..."
Okay..listen to me. There are so many reasons someone will do this. Number one being they're an asshole. And that's okay! Your standards may be too high for them to live up to. Or they may have some personal issues happening...issues that you'd probably be happy they didn't involve you in. Whatever the reason, it was probably for the best.
8. Don't fucking ghost on people.
Don't be an asshole. It's lame & childish. Be upfront about your interest, or lack thereof.
AND stop going out with guys just for a "free meal." *eye roll* Let them spend their money on someone who's really interested...and go buy you some food stamps or something.
9. A title doesn't equal RESPECK!
Being someone's girlfriend doesn't mean much if they don't respect you. Red flags during the dating stage are not going to magically disappear once he throws that "girlfriend" title on you. So above & beyond, make sure the person you're dating respects you & your feelings!
10. Don't start what you can't finish.
If you did back-flips to get him, you're gonna have to back-flip through life to keep him. Meaning, don't start doing things to hook your man & then fall off once you get him. If you're not a "Stepford Wife", don't pretend to be one. Inconsistency is one of the top reasons relationships don't work out. Be realistic about who you are & don't do things you can't sustain.
11. "Hey Sis!"
Listen, his family/friends do not belong to you. You may form a genuine loving relationship with them, which is awesome! However, it's important to understand they are HIS family and HIS friends. If sides ever need to be taken, don't expect them to take yours.
12. Stop looking for your "Other Half."
If you're out here looking for somebody to "complete you," you are setting yourself up for a shit storm. When you link your self-worth to someone else's approval, you lose any chance of feeling whole. And until you can feel whole and secure by yourself, you will continue to run through dead-end relationships. You aren't broken and you don't need to be fixed. But you do need a strong sense of autonomy, otherwise you'll come off as clingy and insecure. And nobody wants that.
13. Trust or LEAVE.
If you feel the need to snoop through your man's phone/email/DMs on a regular basis, you have no business being in that relationship! Don't be a psycho. Save yourself the stress and either build trust or bow out.
14. Know your role.
I don't mean this in the misogynist, barefoot-and-pregnant way. I mean that you should know that as a girlfriend, you are his partner and supporter, NOT his mama/social worker/maid/personal assistant. Hold space for him to be who he is, but hold him accountable, too! You are not his crutch, and if you enable him early on, you will disable your bond in the long run.
15. Allow people to be who they are, where they are.
Contrary to popular belief, it's NOT your job to make your man better. By all means, encourage his hustle and support his personal development, but resist the urge to try to change, improve, or "fix" him. It's just gonna make you feel crazy and make him feel resentful. If he's not on your level, recognize that and keep it moving. You don't have to lower your standards, but you also can't force him to raise his.
As you probably already know, dating in 2016 is confusing as hell (LOL). Please know that this is not the playbook on which you should base all your dating decisions. We realize that circumstances, and people, change. Ultimately, dating is about having fun and doing it YOUR way! Go with your gut, live your truth & absolutely do what's right for YOU. Delicious Living Coach Adama Hamadi challenges & helps women live their truth unapologetically. Click here to learn more about her & her project "Dream, Leap, Live."
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